Modificadores fuera de lugar en inglés/ Ejemplos de modificadores fuera de lugar

Modificadores fuera de lugar en inglés/ Ejemplos de modificadores fuera de lugar

¡Hola, aprendices! Esta publicación lo ayudará a dominar qué son los modificadores fuera de lugar en inglés, los diferentes tipos de modificadores fuera de lugar y cómo corregirlos. Primero entendamos qué es un modificador fuera de lugar.

What is a misplaced modifier in English?

Un modificador fuera de lugar en inglés es una palabra, una frase o una cláusula que se coloca lejos de la palabra que modifica y, a menudo, parece modificar algo que no tiene la intención de modificar. Como está fuera de lugar, hace que el significado de una oración sea ambiguo.

El principal problema con un modificador fuera de lugar es que el lector puede malinterpretar la oración que lo contiene.

Misplaced modifier examples:

  • I saw some cute puppies driving to the office.
    Here, driving to the office (a present participle phrase) is the misplaced modifying phrase that seems to be modifying the noun “puppies.” Can puppies be driving to the office? It is not possible. We, the readers, understand it’s intended to modify the subject I, but since it is placed near to the noun puppies, it seems to be modifying it. This is how a modifier is misplaced. Our job as a writer is to write in a way that is understood by all, without any ambiguity.
    Correction: Driving to the office, I saw some cute puppies.
  • Max almost failed every test he gave.
    This sentence makes sense without any modification. So, what is the misplaced modifier here if it perfectly makes sense? It is more likely that he failed almost every test he gave than almost failing every test he gave. So, the adverb almost is misplaced here.
    Correction: Max failed almost every test he gave.
  • Leaving everything to God sometimes works for us.
    What is the misplaced modifier in this sentence? This sentence makes perfect sense. But “how are you reading it’ is the question. The sentence can be read in two different ways with two completely different meanings:
    “Leaving everything to god sometimes” works for us. The adverb sometimes is a part of the subject.
    Leaving everything to the god “sometimes works for us.” Here, the adverb sometimes is a part of the predicate; it is modifying the main verb (works) in the sentence.
    When a modifier can modify both (what’s coming before it and after it), it is called a squinting modifier.)
  • Seeking an apology for my bad behavior, a letter was written to my parents.
    This is an incorrect sentence as it does not have the subject the modifier (Seeking an apology for my bad behavior) can modify. Such a modifier is called a dangling modifier.

Tener un modificador fuera de lugar en una oración es como apuntar a una cosa y golpear la otra.

Types of misplaced modifiers in English

Types of misplaced modifiers in English

Hay 3 tipos de modificadores fuera de lugar en inglés:

  1. Classic/normal misplaced modifiers
  2. Squinting modifiers
  3. Dangling modifiers

1. Classic misplaced modifiers

Estos son modificadores que parecen estar modificando el sustantivo incorrecto en una oración.

Examples of classic misplaced modifiers:

  • My friend Monu left a wristwatch at my house imported from Germany.
    The misplaced modifier (in red) seems to be modifying the wrong noun: my house. Can my house be imported from a country? It does not seem possible. The misplaced modifier intends to modify the noun “wristwatch” but appears to be modifying the wrong one: my house. Though we know what it is actually modifying, it is not right to leave a statement with such ambiguity.
    Correction: My friend Monu left a wristwatch imported from Germany at my house.
  • The boys are watching movies on my phone smoking cigarettes quietly.
    The misplaced modifier (smoking cigarettes quietly) seems to be modifying the noun phrase: my phone. Can my phone smoke cigarettes? No, right? The modifier is actually modifying the noun ‘boys‘.
    Correction:
    The boys, smoking cigarettes quietly, are watching movies on my phone.
    Smoking cigarettes quietly, the boys are watching movies on my phone.
  • He nearly ruined the life of 2000 students.
    As a reader, it seems that he almost ruined their lives. But the word ‘nearly’ is misplaced and intends to modify the noun phrase ‘2000 students’. In the mind of the writer, the meaning of this sentence is perfectly clear.
    Correction: He ruined the life of nearly 2000 students.
  • Only your father gave me 2000 rupees for the entire work.
    The sentence is grammatically fine. But the meaning (that we perceive) of the sentence is not what the writer intends to give. The writer intends to modify the noun phrase ‘2000 rupess’ but misplaces the modifier ‘only’.
    Correction: Your father gave me only 2000 rupees for the entire work.
  • Ron was playing with his dog in a pink sweater.
    Who’s in the pink sweater? Is it Ron or his dog? The prepositional phrase (working as a modifier) is close to the noun ‘dog’ and seems to be modifying it. You wouldn’t think otherwise as the modifying phrase is close to it. But it can possibly (and actually intends to) modify the subject ‘Ron’.
    Correction:
    In a pink sweater, Ron was playing with his dog.
    Ron, in a pink sweater, was playing with his dog.

More misplaced modifiers

  • The kids were playing with the keys under the table.
    Correction: The kids were playing under the table with the keys.
  • While coming back from the gym, I found a smart man’s watch.
    Correction: While coming back from the gym, I found a man’s smartwatch.
  • I had to eat the cold plate of Mac and Cheese.
    Correction: I had to eat the plate of cold Mac and Cheese.
  • We slowly ran to Jon’s house and ate the meal he had prepared.
    Correction: We ran to Jon’s house and slowly ate the meal he had prepared.
  • Riya only contributed $1000 to the fund created for some poor students.
    Correction: Riya contributed only $1000 to the fund created for some poor students. (modifying the noun ‘$1000’)
    Correction: Only Riya contributed Riya contributed $1000 to the fund created for some poor students. (modifying the noun ‘Riya’)
    Correction: Riya only contributed $1000 to the fund created for some poor students. (modifying the verb ‘contributed’)

2. Squinting modifiers

Los modificadores que parecen estar modificando las palabras que vienen antes y después se llaman modificadores de entrecerrar los ojos. Un modificador de entrecerrar los ojos también se conoce como modificador de dos vías.

Examples of squinting modifiers:

  • Eating junk food sometimes does not affect your health.
    Sometimes is the misplaced modifier that is modifying both the verbs coming to its left and right (Eating and affect). Is “eating sometimes” does not affect your health or it ‘sometimes does not affect your health’?
  • Whatever she cooks quickly changes my mood.
    Does the modifier (sometimes) qualify the verb of the noun clause cooks or the main verb of the sentence changes? Again, it is not clear which word it is modifying.

How to correct a squinting modifier?

Coloque un modificador de entrecerrar los ojos cerca de la palabra que modifica. Tomemos los ejemplos anteriores y mejorémoslos.

  • Sometimes, eating junk food does not affect your health. (modifying the verb ‘eating’)
  • Eating junk food does not sometimes affect your health. (modifying the verb ‘affect’)
  • Whatever she quickly cooks changes my mood. (modifying the verb ‘cooks’)
  • Whatever she cooks quickly changes my mood. (modifying the verb ‘changes’)

3. Dangling modifiers

Un modificador colgante pierde la palabra o palabras que modifica o puede modificar en una oración. A diferencia de un modificador clásico o entrecerrado, un modificador colgante no tiene la palabra o palabras que intenta modificar.

Examples of dangling modifiers:

  • After writing the book, a grand party will happen.
    What does the modifying phrase (after writing the book) modify? The sentence does not have anything the modifier is modifying. The modifier has an action in it; a grand party, the only noun in the sentence, can’t write the book. So, this is a case of a dangling modifier.
  • While talking over the phone, the train left.
    The modifying phrase misses the word it intends to modify. The noun train that is coming next to it can’t talk over the phone. So, the modifier dangles again without having the word it modifies.)

How to correct a dangling modifier?

Un modificador colgante se puede corregir de las siguientes dos maneras:

  1. Add the subject of the dangling modifier
  2. Change the dangling modifier into a dependent clause

Tomemos el ejemplo anterior y corríjalo de estas dos formas.

Dangling modifier sentence: While talking over the phone, the train left.

  • While talking over the phone, I missed the train.
  • While I was talking over the phone, the train left.

How to correct misplaced modifiers in English?

Un modificador fuera de lugar en inglés simplemente se corrige colocándolo junto a/cerca de la palabra/palabras que modifica. Sí, así de simple es corregir un modificador fuera de lugar. ¡Vamos a intentarlo!

Misplaced modifier examples:

  • Rahul bought a dog for my sister named Tommy. ❌
  • Rahul bought a dog named Tommy for my sister. ✔️
  • There is a concept in my college called Growth For Everyone. ❌
  • There is a concept called Growth For Everyone in my college. ✔️
  • Watching the video of his wedding, the old memories came back to life. ❌
  • After we saw the video of his wedding, the old memories came back to life. ✔️
  • An expensive plate of steak was served to us last night. ❌
  • A plate of expensive steak was served to us last night. ✔️
  • A man’s bored life is tough to look at. ❌
  • A bored man’s life is tough to look at. ✔️

FAQs

What is an example of a misplaced modifier?
Un modificador fuera de lugar es una palabra, una frase o una cláusula que se coloca lejos de la palabra que modifica. Dado que está fuera de lugar, hace que el significado de una oración sea ambiguo o diferente.

Ex – My friend Monu left a wristwatch at my house imported from Germany.

‘Importado de Alemania’ es un modificador fuera de lugar que parece estar modificando el sintagma nominal mi casa pero en realidad intenta modificar el sustantivo reloj de pulsera. ¿Se puede importar mi casa de un país? No parece posible. Aunque sabemos lo que realmente está modificando, no es correcto dejar una declaración con tanta ambigüedad.

What are the three types of misplaced modifiers?
Hay tres tipos de modificadores fuera de lugar en inglés:

  1. Modificador clásico fuera de lugar: estos son modificadores que parecen estar modificando el sustantivo incorrecto en una oración.
  2. Modificador de entrecerrar los ojos: los modificadores que parecen estar modificando las palabras anteriores y posteriores se denominan modificadores de entrecerrar los ojos.
  3. Modificador colgante: un modificador colgante pierde la palabra o palabras que modifica o puede modificar en una oración. A diferencia de un modificador clásico o entrecerrado, un modificador colgante no tiene la palabra o palabras que intenta modificar.

What is the difference between misplaced and dangling modifiers?
Un modificador clásico fuera de lugar parece modificar algo que no pretende modificar y se encuentra muy lejos de la palabra que pretende modificar. Por otro lado, un modificador colgante simplemente cuelga en una oración. No tiene nada que modificar en una oración. La palabra que pretende modificar no está en la oración.

Misplaced modifier example: I had to eat the hot plate of Mac and Cheese.
Correction: I had to eat the plate of hot Mac and Cheese

Dangling modifier example: While talking over the phone, the bus left. (the bus can’t talk and the sentence misses the word it intends to modify)
Correction: While talking over the phone, I missed the bus.

How can misplaced modifiers be avoided?
Colocar los modificadores cerca de lo que intentan modificar lo ayudará a evitar perderlos. Si los coloca lejos del tema que intentan modificar, hay buenas posibilidades de que los coloque mal y sus lectores malinterpreten el significado del tema.

How do you get rid of a dangling participle?
Si un participio colgante aparece al comienzo de una oración, use un sustantivo/pronombre que pueda modificar justo después. Si se encuentra en el medio o al final de una oración, intente usar una palabra que pueda modificar justo antes.

After writing the book, a grand party will happen.
Correction: After writing the book, I will throw a grand party.

Why is it important to fix misplaced and dangling modifiers?
Tener modificadores fuera de lugar y colgando en su oración la hace ambigua o cambia el significado original de la oración. Para asegurarse de que sus lectores entiendan lo que comunica en la oración, no un significado diferente, es importante evitar modificadores fuera de lugar y colgantes.

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